We get tons of requests to make special activities or excursions part of great family vacations. One the most popular is fly-fishing and the level of experience of our clients is from ‘never done it but want to try’ to ‘I’m an avid fisherman and want to go to the best spot on my trip’. We have many outfitters that can provide a unique, western fly-fishing experience in great mountain locales, but we’d thought we’d share some cool spots in Arizona that may tickle your fancy.
The Grand Canyon State is home to 85 species of fish that inhabit more than 300 cold-water streams and 100-plus lakes and reservoirs. Ah, the choices! These Arizona locations can be accessed from our popular Canyon Country or Desert Southwest trips that can be customized for you by Tracks and Trails. Like reviewing a new restaurant, picking a favorite fishing hole is mostly subjective, but it’s hard to argue with these recommendations:
Lee’s Ferry is Arizona’s mecca for blue-ribbon trout. The Colorado River’s clear, cold (50 degrees year-round) water is hemmed in by 1,000-foot-high-cliffs. Dry fly-fishing is at its best in the summer months, when monsoon rains wash grasshoppers, cicadas, ants and beetles into the river, and shallow nymphing invites strikes. From Page, drive south 25 miles on U.S. Route 89; turn right onto U.S. Route 89A and head north 14.5 miles. 15fishable miles.
You can fish Oak Creek downstream from Sedona (rainbow trout and smallmouth bass), or upstream from Grasshopper Point (rainbow and brown trout). Arizona Game and Fish Department stocks the creek almost every week. A dry/dropper setup will sometimes produce strikes on both flies. From Sedona, drive north on State Route 89A past Slide Rock State Park. 50 fishable miles.
LakePowellboasts 1,900 miles of shoreline and is the second-largest reservoir in the country. Cliff walls surround the deep, clear canyon lakeproviding excellent casting spots for fishing cracks, corners and rock rubble. Striped bass guard the lake’s shaded coves, while Wahweap Bay traditionally gives up the larger rainbow and brown trout. From Page, drive north on U.S. Route 89 to the south entrance of Wahweap Bay. 186 fishable miles. Shuttle service is available within the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area.
LakePleasant is one of the best-kept secrets in the Southwest. Fish for several kinds of bass as well as crappies. Sport fish follow the abundant threadfin shad into the creek channels in the spring and open water in the summer. From Phoenix, drive north on Interstate 17 to the Carefree Highway exit. Turn left onto Carefree Highway and drive west 11 miles to Pleasant Harbor Boulevard. Turn right and drive 1 mile to the marina entrance. 110 miles of shoreline.